Saturday, April 11, 2009

Truth, lies and self-deception

Recently, I have had a friend in great angst with another over a little thing called lying. She said something that I hadn't defined for myself before, but I think has a lot of validity. She said that lies are always selfish. Hmmm. Interesting thought. Think about all of the different reasons and ways we lie, yup, they do seem to be at their core, selfish reasons for lying. There are lots of reasons for keeping quiet, some of which are just good manners, and I'm totally for that. But truth is about honesty and a persons character. Who a person is at the core of their being. Something to think about.

Recently, I had another acquaintance who has (what I consider to be) a bad habit of always saying, "You're lying." In response to things he finds slightly suspect. I finally asked him why he kept saying that. Had I lied to him at some point? Has he had such rotten luck with people in general that he is always being lied to. his response, interestingly, was "Don't women always lie?" Huh. No. I'm pretty sure they don't. At least I don't. I can't even think of anything that would be worth the energy of keeping up with the lie to be worth lying.

A couple of weeks ago, my friend's winged monkey made some statement about how I was lying to myself ( I can't remember exactly what he said but it was to the effect of my not knowing myself.) I thought that was interesting. When I tried to get him to be specific and say exactly what he meant, he suddenly had to go and do something. Sigh. There are many things that can be said to me that would qualify as pushing my buttons. Those issues that I worry about regulary (Yes, I do worry that I am the most selfish person on the planet.) But this? I can't get too worked up because I do know myself pretty damn well, I work hard to be as honest with myself as I am with others.

My sister, yougottawonder, and I talk a lot about her kids. They, from time to time, cause her great angst including but not limited to, their propensity to lie. We can't figure out what it's about. Why do some kids feel that they need to lie? What lessons are they being taught out in the world that convinces them that it is better to lie than to be honest? These are people who do not appreciate the simplicity of life that comes from being honest.

Today I found a new blog (clearly, I have too much time on my hands) and the most recent post happened to be on lying. Although the specific issue was not mine, her feelings and descriptors of herself are exactly how I would describe myself.

I hope that if I teach nothing else in my classroom each day, that I am teaching my kids to tell the truth and take responsibility for themselves and their actions. I think the world would be such a better place if we could manage to get people to be honest with one another.

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